(Woodland, CA) – April 13, 2016 - Yolo County District Attorney Jeff Reisig announced today that convicted child molester Michael Ward will remain in state prison for at least another three years. Ward’s parole hearing was scheduled to be heard before the Board of Parole Hearings at the California Health Care Facility in Stockton on April 12, 2016. Prior to the start of the hearing, Ward signed a hearing waiver, agreeing to remain in prison and delay his next hearing for three years. This is the fourth time Ward has not been granted a parole date.
A Yolo County Jury convicted Ward of child molestation involving two young girls in Woodland, CA in 1996. Ward had sent pornographic Polaroid photographs through the mail to an undercover Utah Special Agent. A search warrant was obtained and other evidence was found linking Ward to two young girls whom he had photographed and molested. Ward has admitted molesting numerous other young children in Woodland. On October 17, 1997 a Yolo County judge sentenced Ward to 15 years-to-life for Lewd or Lascivious Act upon Child Under Fourteen With More Than One Victim.
Supervising Deputy District Attorney Christopher Bulkeley, who prosecuted the case in 1996, appeared at the hearing. Bulkeley was prepared to argue against Ward’s release based upon his prior record, his lack of any insight into his criminal behavior, his complete lack of parole plans and most importantly his continuing danger to the public. Ward excelled at grooming young neighborhood children and building trust with them in order to manipulate them for his sexual purposes. He was known as “Magic Mike” because he could pull a quarter out of a child’s ear, he posed as Santa Claus for the children in his apartment complex and provided them with candy, ice cream and other treats. Ward has admitted to molesting 100 children in his lifetime.
The mother of one of the victims attended the hearing accompanied by Yolo County District Attorney Victim Advocate Estela Morales. Morales read a written statement to the board. In the letter the mother stated, “The defendant preyed on my daughter among many others in the community, and I urge you to keep the defendant in prison to prevent future crimes against children and to prevent others from experiencing the abject emotional trauma my daughter and our family continue to live with”. The Board was appreciative of this letter and an additional letter from the victim.
According to District Attorney Jeff Reisig, “The result of a three year waiver means that the victim and her family’s wish, that Mr. Ward remain imprisoned for the safety of the children in our community, was met.”